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Kananaskis Valley Temperatures in Summer

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  • 1 Forest Fire Research Institute, Department of Fisheries and Forestry, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
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Abstract

Application of temperature observations depends on assessment of the difference in temperature between points of observation and points of application. As an aid to estimating temperature variations in valleys, particularly in Rocky Mountain forest land, summer season observations in 1960 from 21 thermohygrographs were analyzed. Daily maximum and minimum temperatures were the main variables considered.

Temperature differences between successive 20-day periods were generally greater than those due to elevation, aspect or crown cover within a period. A nocturnal inversion of 9F in the first 300 ft above valley bottom occurred on the average clear summer night, with a nearly isothermal layer 500 ft or more thick above that. Literature reports indicate that nocturnal inversions in other valleys on clear nights usually differ by less than a factor of 2 from the Kananaskis data. An inversion of 3F in daily maximum temperature was also found in the first 300 ft above valley bottom; this is attributed, with reason, to a difference in evapo-transpiration between slope and valley bottom.

Abstract

Application of temperature observations depends on assessment of the difference in temperature between points of observation and points of application. As an aid to estimating temperature variations in valleys, particularly in Rocky Mountain forest land, summer season observations in 1960 from 21 thermohygrographs were analyzed. Daily maximum and minimum temperatures were the main variables considered.

Temperature differences between successive 20-day periods were generally greater than those due to elevation, aspect or crown cover within a period. A nocturnal inversion of 9F in the first 300 ft above valley bottom occurred on the average clear summer night, with a nearly isothermal layer 500 ft or more thick above that. Literature reports indicate that nocturnal inversions in other valleys on clear nights usually differ by less than a factor of 2 from the Kananaskis data. An inversion of 3F in daily maximum temperature was also found in the first 300 ft above valley bottom; this is attributed, with reason, to a difference in evapo-transpiration between slope and valley bottom.

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